“Heaven knows we need never be ashamed of our tears, for they are rain upon the blinding dust of earth, overlying our hard hearts. I was better after I had cried, than before–more sorry, more aware of my own ingratitude, more gentle.”
? Charles Dickens, Great Expectations
“It’s so curious: one can resist tears and ‘behave’ very well in the hardest hours of grief. But then someone makes you a friendly sign behind a window, or one notices that a flower that was in bud only yesterday has suddenly blossomed, or a letter slips from a drawer… and everything collapses. ”
One might simply think of tears as those salty drops that fall from your eyes when you cry. Actually, our tears clean the eyes every time we blink. Tears also keep the eyes moist, which is important for our vision. But aside the cleaning functions tears could also be a relief or an embarrassment – they can spring from happiness, pain or grief, or just be the result of chopping some onions. Without them, our eyes wouldn’t work normally. Our tears are an amazing aspect of our bodies and one we still don’t know a great deal about. Tears are a complex mix of proteins, antibodies and other substances, and have antibacterial and antiviral properties. If you could collect enough to drink, they would be more nutritious than water.
Nevertheless the real magnificence of tears lies in the fact that our tears have a great healing function as they are our body’s release valve for stress, sadness, grief, anxiety, and frustration. Also, we can have tears of joy: It is indeed a way to remove pent up emotions so they don’t lodge in our body as stress symptoms such as fatigue or pain. For both men and women, tears are a sign of courage, strength, and authenticity. You experience the meaning of living by having feelings in your body, not from ideas in your head. “Meaning” lies in your unique feeling response to any situation, based on your own lifetime of experiences. Being open to tears, anger, embarrassment, love, and other emotions allows you to discover, through the exploration of the “felt meaning,” the personal meanings which gives value and direction to your life. It might help to think of feelings as “felt meaning”, your feeling of the meaning of the situation to you. Our tears in this case are the main access to the network of thoughts and beliefs which gives a goal and a direction, a meaning or a purpose, to our lives.
Sometimes we get to find tears in our eyes without knowing why. The lump in the throat or thickening in the chest, wordless though it is, knows the answer and will stubbornly refuse to respond until we hit upon the right words or image. When we find the right words, the lump will melt, the warmth will spread through our chest, and we then will know exactly why we are crying. Such a release is called a “felt shift.” It’s the reaction of our own body linked to the subconscious, crafted out of our own life experiences as carried in our body. The meaning will imply actions.
Crying makes us feel better, even when a problem persists. In addition to physical detoxification, emotional tears heal the heart. We don’t want to hold tears back. It quite normal to meet people who think that crying is meant for women and week people: sentiment that comes from parents who were uncomfortable around tears, a society that tells us we’re weak for crying–in particular that “powerful men don’t cry.” I reject these concepts. The new enlightened pattern of what constitutes a powerful man and woman is someone who has the strength and self awareness to cry meaning some that acknowledges his or her pain and sorrow and is ready to overcome them by letting them fade. Let’s let it all out let our tears flow to purify stress, negativity, the pain and keep a very energetic body and soul.